NZ Welcomes Uk Decisions On Child Migrants

  • Nick Smith
Associate Minister of Social Services, Work and Income (Work and Income)

Associate Social Services Minister Nick Smith said today that New Zealand officials will work with their British counterparts on areas of joint action concerning the welfare of former child migrants.

"The UK Government will establish a Support Fund for former child migrants without means, to travel to the United Kingdom to meet relatives. The Support Fund will provide travel, living and counselling costs for former child migrants who have never before looked up their birth families."

"We will be offering the services of the Adoption Information Services Unit of CYPFS as an agency who may be able to assist with aspects of the administration of the Support Fund from the New Zealand end."

New Zealand is also providing information and support for former child migrants including:

- contributing to the British "signpost" system of references to the categories of information held about the Child Migration Scheme and former child migrants by various organisation in New Zealand,
- continuing to provide former child migrants with access to their personal information,
- an information leaflet for former child migrants,
- newspaper advertisements inviting former child migrants to come forward and contact the Adoption Information Services Unit and/or the British Child Migrant Society (NZ) Inc, and
- linking information on the CYPFS website to the UK website.

"The New Zealand Government amended the Citizenship Regulations back in 1995 to provide for the situation of former child migrants. Our authorities deal with citizenship matters on a supportive and flexible basis and former child migrants are not required to pay the fee for the grant of citizenship. I have assured the British Child Migrant Society in New Zealand that we will do everything we can to assist any remaining migrants who have yet to deal with citizenship issues. I will personally assist child migrants who are having difficulty obtaining citizenship."